Sunday, July 28, 2013

Week Seventeen: On to Formation!

Well! This week has been pretty interesting and atypical, for a lot of reasons.

The first is that I did not fly once this week. Yup, you heard me. No flights. I did have a couple sims, but the ones following them were quickly dropped from my schedule. It turns out that sequestration is hitting us in a big way, and I don't just say that because the Commissary is closed on Monday and Tuesday and I can't go get my favorite sandwich from there on those days (though that IS pretty annoying).

Nope, because the military is forced to deal with extreme budget cuts, we've had to furlough our civilians. So one day a week, every civilian on base doesn't get to go to work which means they don't get to be paid for that day. This includes the sim instructors, so we are now in the midst of a "sim stop" due to the decreased number of sims that can be done.

So instead of having us wait around forever trying to get opted for our instrument flights, our IPs have decided to do something different: some of us have been moved on to the Formation block!

Six people (me included) from D Flight are going to be flying Form next, while the other six will continue on in Instruments. One of our guys is still in Contact, but he just got out of the Commander's Review Process. Oh! I don't think I posted this yet, but we had a successful return to Pilot Training in D Flight! One of our own had struggled and "flunked out" but the Squadron, Group, and Wing Commanders decided to keep him. So he's back flying now, in the advanced aero phase of Contact. Which is awesome for him, I'm really glad he's staying.

So for the past week I've started studying Formation stuff. There aren't too many numbers and that kind of thing. It will mostly be "hands." Meaning seat-of-the-pants, ability to fly the plane 10 feet from the wingtip of another plane.

I'm stoked.

We've had to kind of rush through the Form academics, because without them, a test (of course), and one sim ride, we won't be opted to fly. Get this: on Tuesday I will have my Form test, one last Form CAI, a Form sim, and my first Form ride. Sweet. No seriously, I'm looking forward to it!

More updates to come! Stay classy.

~ Dakota

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